After a debut season in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship that can easily be described as 'challenging', Mark Proctor says he is hopeful of making his move up the order in 2006 as the former SCSA driver heads into his second year in the championship armed with a new car.

Having campaigned the former Rob Collard Vauxhall Astra Coupe during 2005, Proctor will switch to the race winning Honda Civic Type-R of Tom Chilton for the new season having purchased the car from Arena Motorsports and the 37-year-old said he felt the Civic was the right car to help him start challenging for points on a regular basis.

"I'm probably the heaviest driver on the grid and Chilton won with the Civic when it was carrying maximum ballast last season - the fact its right-hand drive and we run mostly on clockwise circuits also means it carries the driver's weight very well through corners," he told the official championship website. "That was a deciding factor when we looked at which car to run for 2006.

"I know I'm not just going to jump in the car and win, but I know it's a bloody good car and a proven winner. I really think we can get on the podium and if I haven't got one by the middle of the season I'll be a bit miffed."

Proctor added that he was hoping to regain some pride during 2006 after a challenging first season in the BTCC, when a number of engine problems and a huge accident at Croft meant results didn't match the expectations he had at the start of the year.

"I'll admit my pride was dented in 2005," he said. "It took time to sort the car, but we did sort it so the results should have been better. But I think 2006 is looking good for us. Arena will be on hand at the start of the year to offer technical advice and help make sure we hit the ground running, plus the engines are being tuned by Dick Langford who I've dealt with during my years in oval racing. So there's good continuity there.

"Ultimately, we've got to raise our own personal bar massively in 2006 and I'm confident we can."

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